An Alabama meteorologist learned that tornadoes had damaged his home while in the air, but continued to report on the climate crisis, The Washington Post reported Thursday.
James Spann, chief meteorologist for ABC 33/40 in Birmingham, was reporting on the deadly series of tornadoes that struck Alabama on Thursday, killing at least five people, when he took a short break to monitor his family.
“What I’m doing is texting my wife to make sure she’s at the shelter,” Spann told viewers, according to the Post. “So again, if we can get back to that chamber.”
However, just minutes later, another station employee had to replace Spann after he examined the weather maps and told viewers he needed another short break.
“Let me see how some people are doing really fast,” Spann said.
In just under 15 minutes, Spann was back on the air to explain that tornadoes struck and damaged his home before resuming his work.
“We had major damage to my home,” Spann said. “I had to be sure, my wife is fine, but the tornado went through there and it is not good. It is bad. It is bad.”
Spann is an Emmy Award-winning broadcaster and is well known in Alabama for his work. Recently, state media AL.com named him “Alabama’s most well-known and influential television meteorologist.”